6 mindblowing ways people dispose of their corpses instead of traditional burials

For the first time this year, cremation has surpassed traditional burial as the most popular after-death option.

According to data from the National Funeral Directors Association, 48.5% of people are choosing cremation while only 45.6% opt for burials.

But as those two figures show, cremation and burials still leave out nearly 6% of the dying population. So where do those people go?

Here are some of the innovative ways people are choosing to spend eternity.


Sandy Sullivan

Instead of using open flames to incinerate the body, resomation relies on heated water and potassium hydroxide. The combination liquefies the body, leaving just the person's bones behind.

In the US, resomation is still catching on. Fewer than 10 states have funeral homes where resomation is an option.

It's more popular in the UK, where in 2008 the Cremation Society amended their 134-year-old charter to classify resomation as a superior option to burial.

Eternal reefs.

Gail Burton/AP Images

People who don't want their ashes sitting in an urn on the mantle can take it a step further by having their cremains (crushed bones) mixed with concrete.

The company Eternal Reefs can then turn the mixture into an artificial reef fit for the ocean.

'Eternal Reefs are permanent living legacies that memorialise the passing of a loved one by helping to preserve and protect the marine environment for the benefit of future generations,' the company states on its website.

Fish and other marine life can then inhabit the eco-friendly reef as if it were one of the ocean's own.

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